Uncorkings 8/9/2010

News and notes from the world of wine.

Americans are consuming alcohol at the highest rate in 25 years, according to a new Gallup Poll. The poll found that 67 percent of U.S. adults drank alcohol—the highest percentage since 1985. Beer remains the favorite choice, followed by wine and liquor. See the full Gallup survey.

In addition, the Italian Wine and Food Institute (IWFI) said Italy is the leading importer of wines in the USA, outpacing historic rival Australia in the first five months of 2010.

Enomatic wine dispensing systems may be growing in popularity, but purchasers face closer scrutiny from regulators who see the machines as a challenge to liquor control regulations. The latest concern comes from British Columbia’s Liquor Control and Licensing Branch, which has been investigating the use of the system at private liquor stores.

The Center for Wine Origins launched the Wine Location Specialist Certificate Program, developed by Master of Wine Sandy Block. The program is a comprehensive guide covering two leading wine regions, Champagne and Porto.

Bonny Doon Vineyard's Randall Grahm is about to embark on a radical project to make wine from a vineyard grown from grape seeds of uncertain parentage. The aim of the long-term project is to create what he has described as “a true vin de terroir.”

Bloomberg News reports that a shutdown of the unregulated currency market in Venezuela is reducing shipments of whisky there, and is pushing up prices by almost 50 percent. Venezuela is the largest market for Scotch whisky in Latin America, and the sixth-biggest global importer by value, according to the Scotch Whisky Association in Edinburgh.

See last week's Uncorkings here.



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